Sunday, February 26, 2012

Evensong....

...with the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. Anglican-style Evensong, chanted in the church of the Holy Ghost, Balham, in full communion with the Catholic Church. We chanted the psalms, had the Scripture readings,chanted the canticle, said the Creed, prayed for the Pope, prayed for our country...

"It's a new initiative - I'll be glad if we get ten people" said Deacon James Bradley, who organised it. We got twice that number, a devotional atmosphere, and for me at any rate a quiet sense of history being made.

Certainly C.of E.-style psalms and "Endew thy ministers with righteousness" and so on would be unfamiliar territory to the young families with small children who make up the bulk of Balham's congregations for the packed morning Masses. But to have Evensong in this way is a blessing for the parish, a good initiative for the Ordinariate and a sign of what can be done...numbers will quietly grow, and I for one will certainly be attending again. 5pm, every Sunday in Lent.

10 comments:

marion Banks-Wilkinson said...

Would love to have been there. I sang matins and evensong as a child chorister.

Anonymous said...

I trust 'O Lord, save the Queen' was changed to 'O Lord, save the Pope'

Anonymous said...

Why have Evensong in a Catholic church when you can, and should, have Vespers?

Joanna Bogle said...

Because these Catholics, in the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, give the name EVENSONG to what some other Catholics - including you and me - call Vespers. Follow up the link given and you will learn about the Ordinariate - which you really ought to know about already if you read, as you evidently do, Catholic blogs. You need to understand that the Catholic tradition is a rich one.

To get a wider and deeper understanding of all this, find out about Eastern-rite Catholics and some of the terms they use. Find out about the rich traditions of different countries: there are different names for Easter in different languages, special patron saints, all sorts of feast-days and much, much more!

Then, as a small act of reparation for your ignorance go to an Ordinariate Mass - or Evensong - and join in with the Ordinariate Catholics one Sunday this Lent. Ask Our Lady of Walsingham to bless this new initiative and watch over its flourishing.

Malcolm said...

Whilst you can have Vespers in a an ordinary Roman Catholic parish church, generally you don't. In Anglican churches evensong is often held - I imagine that they have kept the 16th century practice, whilst we've moved on from it.

There's no point of dogma involved in the names of the offices, or indeed in the times. If we wanted to set up our own religious community with prayers at times of our own devising, we would be permitted to do that.

Di said...

Vespers are prayed and sung in the EVENING. EVENSONG, get it? I think it's wonderful!

John said...

Since the Book of Divine Worship, which contains the text used for Ordinariate Evensong, is an American production it, alas, does not contain an invocation to save the Queen in the evening litany.

Interestingly enough, the old Roman Missal contains a votive collect for the reigning monarch. And before the late council it was common practice in English parishes to pray for the king or queen at the end of Mass with a verse and collect.

It's a funny world, isn't it.

Joanna Bogle said...

?? "late council"??? I was attending Mass at the Jesuit Church in Wimbledon in the late 1980s and at the 11 am sung Mass they had (and have, as far as I know) a prayer for the Queen, chanted in Latin, every time. "Domine salvam fac regina nostra Elizabeth..."

Catholic churches in Britain will be praying for the Queen on her Jubilee this summer, as they have done for all Royal occasions throughout her reign. In many parishes a prayer for the Queen is standard in the Bidding Prayers most weeks.

I am not sure which "late council" you are talking about, but I have been hearing prayers for the Queen with reasonable regularity in Catholic churches throughout my adult life.

Incidentally, we had prayers at the start of Borough Council meetings when I served as a local councillor in the 1970s and early 80s...let us hope that this practice will not be stopped by the latest nonsense from Devon Council.

Clerk said...

I want to thank you for this post, which encouraged me (a Catholic) to attend Evensong and Benediction with the Oxford Ordinariate tonight. It was a beautiful service and - as you rightly say - a blessing.

John said...

Joanna,

I'm delighted to hear it. I was relying on a complaint from an email friend.
The last time I was actually in the UK was years ago and that consisted of two hours in Heathrow. . .no Mass included.

All the best,

-John-